CEDAR CITY – Two Montana residents were arrested in Cedar City Sunday after allegedly leading police on a chase in a stolen vehicle.
Dane Jackson, 34, and Nicole Hiatt, 23, both of Billings, Montana, attempted to flee from police after a Utah Highway Patrol trooper attempted to pull them over for a taillight violation, according to a probable cause statement filed in support of the arrests.
When the trooper attempted to stop the two and turned on the patrol car’s lights, their car pulled into a dirt lot in the area of 200 West and 200 North and then went east on 200 North to Main Street, where it turned south. The car was about a block ahead of the trooper and going over 70 mph in a 30 mph zone, according to the statement. The vehicle then turned into the parking lot of Ron’s Sporting Goods.
“I knew there was not an exit there so I continued to pursue,” the trooper wrote in the statement.
The fleeing car became stuck in an alleyway, and the trooper used his car to box it in. At that point, the car’s occupants, Jackson and Hiatt, got out and started running.
The trooper got out of his car with his weapon drawn and ordered the two to stop. Jackson looked back at the trooper and then kept running, while Hiatt ran between the building and a fence.
Jackson reached a dead end and couldn’t escape. He was taken into custody without further incident. Hiatt was still nearby, and the trooper ordered her to come out. She complied and was also placed under arrest.
“The vehicle came back to a dealership in Montana and Nicole said she had stolen the vehicle,” the trooper wrote. “She also stated she stole the government plates from a vehicle in Montana as well. She told Dane the vehicle was stolen and the plates were stolen.”
Initially, Hiatt claimed she got the vehicle from her father-in-law in Provo, while Jackson said he thought she bought the car through a Craigslist ad from someone in Las Vegas.
The trooper also noted Jackson had recently been released from jail in Montana and was currently out on probation.
“He will likely receive a probation violation from out of state,” the trooper wrote.
Jackson and Hiatt were booked into the Iron County Correctional Facility.
Both were charged with felonies for the possession of a stolen vehicle and attempting to evade police, and misdemeanors for possession of stolen license plates. Jackson was additionally charged with misdemeanor reckless driving and an infraction for the taillight violation.
Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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